us mexico border

Border Patrol Must Obtain Warrant Before Searching Americans’ Phones

A bipartisan group of lawmakers introduced a bill this week that would require law enforcement officers to obtain probable cause warrants before searching U.S. citizen’s digital devices at the border.

The bill was introduced amidst several reports of Customs and Border Protection agents pressing Americans to hand over their devices or reveal their passwords at the border. Most notably, CBP agents detained a U.S.-born NASA scientist at the border in February until he unlocked his phone.

The Protecting Data at the Border Act — introduced by Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. and Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Reps. Jared Polis, D-Colo., and Blake Farenthold, R-Texas — would also bar officials from delaying or denying someone’s entry to or exit from the U.S. if the person declined to give their login information, reports FedScoop.

“Americans’ constitutional rights shouldn’t disappear at the border,” Wyden said in a statement. “By requiring a warrant to search Americans’ devices and prohibiting unreasonable delay, this bill makes sure that border agents are focused on criminals and terrorists instead of wasting their time thumbing through innocent Americans’ personal photos and other data.”

The Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) released a statement Tuesday in support of the bill, stating that a citizen’s Constitutional rights should not disappear at the border.

“A search of your cell phone or social media account is a direct look behind the curtain that covers the most intimate aspects of your life. A border stop shouldn’t be an excuse for extreme surveillance such as downloading the entire contents of your phone. This bill would ensure that the government demonstrates a good reason for searches at the border, and that a judge agrees,” said Greg Nojeim, CDT Director, Freedom, Security, and Technology Project.

According to the summary, the bill also requires that Americans are made aware of their rights before consenting to give up online account information or allow law enforcement to access their personal devices.

“This bill is overdue, and I am glad we can come together in a bicameral, bipartisan manner to ensure that Customs and Border Patrol agents don’t continue to violate essential privacy safeguards,” Polis said in a statement.

 

 

 

Posted in General News

Tags: border security, Customs and Border Protection , CBP, Border Patrol, border arrests, privacy concerns

Print

This Week on FEDtalk

Preparing Young People for Public Service

Tune in to FEDtalk this week for a discussion on the transition between college and government. The guests will cover how the federal government is currently struggling to recruit and retain young people in public service. Guests will also highlight projects by both government entities and stakeholders to encourage individuals to join the next generation of federal government work.

Read more ...

Hear it from FLEOA

FLEOA Encourages Passage of EAGLES Act Following Wave of Mass Public Violence

Nathan Catura, President of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA), the nation’s largest non-partisan, not-for-profit professional association representing more than 27,000 federal law enforcement officers and agents across 65 federal agencies, today issued the following statement in support of the EAGLES Act.

Read more ...
FEDagent

FEDagent.com

The free weekly e-report for Federal Law Enforcement

Get in touch with us

Email FEDagent publisher

Copyright 2019 FEDagent.com
Hosted by Peak Media Company, LLC